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September 17, 2009


Chris Williams

I think that we should link India's seat to a Kashmir referendum, which is likely to cut the ongoing supply of angry British Muslim lads down by a significant amount.



Speaking as someone from the subcontinent, I doubt that a permanent seat to India would really help matters. What it would do is probably embolden the hawks here in Delhi who've had a bug up their ass about the Chinese since...oh...about 1962.

Indian business has substantial economic interests in China. Exports (one of our biggest trading partners), investment, the works. The odd thing is that this hasnt really much affected (moderated?) the political rhetoric.


Chris Williams is right. I think the main effect of giving India a permanent UNSC seat without strings attached would be to irritate Pakistan beyond measure, with all the knock-on effects on Kashmir, Afghanistan and the Midlands that implies. (Using it as a lever for a Kashmir settlement might outweigh this, but probably not; I suspect that the Pakistani establishment is firmly anti-Indian, whatever the facts on the ground.)
I don't believe either that Sarko or any other French president worth his salt would want to give up his top-table seat to the EC's picked man. Regardless of the EU's inability to come up with much of a coherent foreign policy. It would end up as simply a rotating European seat, either voting en bloc with the Russians (if occupied by a German) with the Americans (if a Pole) or in furtherance of idiosyncratic national interests (if a Frenchman).


What on earth is that graphic thing by my previous comment?


Regardless of the EU's inability to come up with much of a coherent foreign policy

This is certainly one of the things I like most about the EU.


What I think the British should do about that is give up our place on the Permanent UN security council in favour of India.
Well Turkey did vote at Christmas a few years ago. You'll be expecting the government to give up nuclear weapons and accept that it is a small island off the Western sprial arm of Eurasia next.


I'd very much like them to ditch nuclear weapons, and there are all sorts of interesting noises being made right now re. Trident replacement and whether it is affordable.

Dan Hardie

The one conceivably good consequence of a Cameron government might be a more rational defence procurement policy. The Tories don't have Labour's neurotic need to be seen as 'tough on defence'; Labour have a very well-merited reputation among the public for having screwed defence issues up over the last twelve years; there is a perceived need for spending cuts, and the likely Defence Secretary, Fox, is a fool who is not likely to be all that effective against the Treasury.

So if we're lucky there will be no A400M transport planes, no Eurofighters, no FRES vehicles, no Trident replacement. Of course, cancelling the first two projects will mean a big row with Our European Partners, which shouldn't disturb the Tories. It will also cause some amusing cognitive dissonance among all those reflexive pro-Europeans who imagine that it's only Washington that gets us to waste our money on worthless weapons systems (hi, Jamie). It's a slim chance, but here's hoping.

On the other hand, if you needed two clowns to continue our policy of mindless Atlanticism and screw our Afghan adventure up even further, Fox and Hague probably fit the bill.


I can't see the carriers lasting, if only because the incomers will want to screw over Gordon Brown's constituency. And the Navy's never really been as Tory as the Army anyway. OTOH, I can't see a Tory government getting rid of the nuclear deterrent.

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